Saturday, January 08, 2005

Correcting a national failure

For once, the Chief Inspector of Schools seems to be talking some sense. Although, let's be fair, there's no way that he could be worse than the village idiot, Mike Tomlinson. It has been a cause of shame to the nation for many years that the provision of vocational and technical education to our children has been practically non-existent. And when any changes to the system are effected, it is invariably on the principle that all forms of education are equal, and therefore can be graded in the same way.

Yes, all skills are valuable in society - but they are valuable for different reasons, and as such, they must be taught and assessed differently. To try and fit vocational teaching to an A-Level marking system is counter-productive, and ultimately degrades both forms of education, preventing them from being taken seriously. Work-related learning can and would work if the educational establishment had the will to implement it.